Good news for Birmingham community gardens

Martineau Gardens receives funding for therapeutic horticulture.

Martineau Gardens in Edgbaston has been awarded significant grants from the Coronavirus Community Support Fund, distributed by The National Lottery Community Fund and the Heart of England Community Foundation’s Coronavirus Resilience Fund, to enable the continuation of a vital service for the community, therapeutic horticulture, during the Covid-19 crisis.

Thanks to the grants, the Community Garden has been able to restart the Therapeutic Horticulture project which supports people from across Birmingham, in managing their mental health to improve wellbeing through the practice of gardening. Referred to as volunteers, many of the participants are vulnerable, social isolated and living with long-term mental health issues

When lockdown began, government guidelines meant that the volunteers were unable to attend the gardens. For many, their regular visits to the gardens had become a lifeline which provided the mental support they needed to keep healthy. The funding has meant that equipment and additional staff have been employed and the volunteers are now gardening in socially distanced pairs.

Tim Bruton, Trustee for Martineau Gardens said: “This support means we can provide help at a time when it’s needed more than ever through the Covid-19 crisis. Though not yet open again to the public, Martineau Gardens is being well cared for and preserved for the wider community, thanks to the dedication of our much valued volunteers. The gardens are a green space much used by and cherished by the local community and we look forward to the time when we can re-open again.”